Menu
Paid Advertisement
view counter

February 2013 Vol. 20. No. 4 Focus on A Downsizing District

In our opinion

Budget: Red alert

By the Notebook on Jan 30, 2013 04:17 PM

If the District’s 2011 and 2012 cutbacks of teachers, nurses, support staff, and programs felt catastrophic, it is hard to find the words to describe what is about to hit us. The School District’s five-year financial plan calls for its payroll to be cut 16 percent in 2013 (or $137 million), plus a 5 percent cut in benefit costs.

Some will say “Cut the central office,” but spending at 440 has already been slashed. And teacher salaries in Philadelphia already lag far behind their suburban counterparts. This budget crisis cannot be solved largely on their backs. 

In these circumstances, saying the District should “live within its means” is unreasonable. The only way to avoid potentially disastrous conflicts is to secure more revenue. The five-year plan counts on no increase in the state subsidy and only a modest $35 million boost from the city. It’s vital that the different constituencies in the city unite to demand adequate funding from the city and state – putting aside other differences for now.

The city must take action to address the longstanding issue of delinquent property taxes and the growing issue of its huge nonprofit sector that does not pay real estate tax. The mayor should take the lead on identifying new revenues. Banks and the local business community should be called upon to help. And underfunded districts across the state need to become a force to be reckoned with in Harrisburg.

The city’s education advocacy groups should not be fighting these battles on their own. Message to our elected officials and civic leaders: Time to step up!

Comments (0)

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.

By using this service you agree not to post material that is obscene, harassing, defamatory, or otherwise objectionable. We reserve the right to delete or remove any material deemed to be in violation of this rule, and to ban anyone who violates this rule. Please see our "Terms of Usage" for more detail concerning your obligations as a user of this service. Reader comments are limited to 500 words. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.

Table of Contents

Read the latest print issue

 

Philly Ed Feed

Stopping Summer Slide

 

Top

Public School Notebook

699 Ranstead St.
Third Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Phone: (215) 839-0082
Fax: (215) 238-2300
notebook@thenotebook.org

© Copyright 2013 The Philadelphia Public School Notebook. All Rights Reserved.
Terms of Usage and Privacy Policy